Survey of school governors and trustees reveals funding is top issue

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5th September 2019 11:26 - Education

Survey of school governors and trustees reveals funding is top issue: A survey looking at the views and experiences of school governors and trustees has revealed insight into the top issues facing schools in England, with 'balancing the budget' the primary concern. 

The National Governance Association survey seeks to understand more about how education policy is affecting schools to inform its annual State of the Nation report.

The latest research questioned over 6,000 respondents, asking them to select up to five issues they were most concerned about, with 72% saying funding was the most pressing. More than three-quarters (77%) said they are not confident that they can manage funding pressures without impacting on the quality of education they are able to offer students - an increase from 74% last year.  Almost a third (32%) said their school was using its reserves to fund their schools, with six out of ten (61%) saying their board expects these to run out by 2021. 

Staff wellbeing and workloads moved up from third place in 2018 to second place in the latest research, with 62% of respondents saying it was a problem facing their school today; a significant jump from last year when it was 37%. Just under half (48%) said their school had taken measures to reduce workload for teachers. 

In third position was support for pupils with special educational needs, with 31% of respondents saying it was an issue within their school, while just over a quarter (26%) said attracting and retaining high-quality teaching staff was a concern. Other areas selected were: pupil well being (25%), improving attainment (22%), parental engagement (21%), ensuring a balanced curriculum (21%) staff retention (18%) and safeguarding (18%).

The research also found that respondents continue to have a poor view of the government’s central education policy, with 78% giving a negative assessment, up from 75% last year. 

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